Former president Jacob Zuma fought back tears in his home at Nkandla while addressing journalist who visited him about the continuing controversy surrounding the refusal of the state the foot his accumulated legal bill. According to the ex-leader;
‘I served South Africa with everything, my entire life and was even unjustly arrested , but the country I served can’t take care of me after retirement’
I am the most assaulted and humiliated and dehumanized ex-president of South Africa.
What are my crimes that I as a former leader and president would be so hunted, that even after I unfairly was bolted out of office behind the constitutionally stipulated tenure, people are still after me.
However, Zuma’s lawyer has insisted that it is only logical that the state pay former president Jacob Zuma’s legal fees because he was in a powerful government position when he allegedly committed corruption.
This was the argument Zuma’s lawyer brought to the table in an affidavit filed this week.
But Cyril Ramaphosa’s director general, Reginald Lubisi, was quick to point out in an explanatory affidavit that such funding can be forfeited if Zuma did not act in the course and scope of his employment as a government official.
The Presidency also hinted it may seek a legal fees refund from Zuma, depending on the outcome of a court challenge to the current state funding of his defence in his corruption trial.
Zuma is embroiled in court battles with the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) and the Democratic Alliance (DA), who want to stop the state from continuing to foot the former president’s legal bill.
The outcome of these cases will undoubtedly influence if and how the government funds the legal costs of state officials accused of corruption.